Monday. 9am. Taipei, Actors’ Studio.
Barbie headed to Actors’ Studio.
Barbie turned to the calling. “Jerry?”
“Hi, why are you here?” Jerry smiled.
“Oh, me and my boss have an appointment with Mr. Charles Lee at 9.30am to interview him about the past Taipei Glamorous Fashion Show,” Barbie said. “My boss and I came separately,”
“Oh, taken breakfast?” Jerry asked, as they both walked together into the Actors’ Studio.
“Yeah. Thanks,” she smiled. “So what is your opinion about the fashion show on Saturday?”
“To me it was good… but tiring,” Jerry said. “It’s a new experience for me… because this is my first time getting to host an event like this,”
Barbie smiled, “Good for you Jerry,”
“Oh, I want to know…”
Barbie looked at him, “Yeah?”
“If you are free to go for lunch with me today?”
Barbie smiled, “Thanks for inviting but I’ll be eating with my boss,”
“Then what about dinner? Are you interested to go for dinner with me?”
Barbie smiled at him, “You are not afraid that my boyfriend will kill you?”
“Ah? Boyfriend? You have a boyfriend…?”
“You never ask,” Barbie smiled, walking ahead.
“Oh…” Jerry abruptly stopped his movement, and walked very slow.
“Hey,” Barbie turned looking at Jerry.
“Huh?” Jerry asked.
“I’m just joking. I’m still single. We can go for dinner, but I can’t promise you when,”
“Really? I don’t mind waiting as long as I can book a slot of your busy schedule to have a 2 hours dinner with you,” Jerry jumped to her.
Barbie laughed as she took her business card out. “This is my business card,” she handed it to him. “My telephone number is there. If I can make it, I can go for dinner with you tomorrow or the day after. I’m occupied tonight to finish my article about the fashion show, so… tonight’s out,”
“Sure, I’ll call you,” Jerry smiled.
Barbie looked over to the voice. “My boss is here, sorry, I’ll see you soon,”
“Sure, I’ll drop you a call!” Jerry said.
Barbie nodded at him before she walked off to her boss that has just arrived.
10am. Qing Xi Village.
“See? The consequences of playing in the rain…” Ken said, bringing a glass of hot water to Rainie.
“Thanks… I will be fine, okay…” Rainie said, taking the cup of water.
“You want to see doctor?” Ken asked, sitting down next to her.
“I was born and raised in a village, Ge. We just go to shop, get some herbs and we’ll be fine after consuming those,” Rainie said, wrapping herself in the blanket.
“Can those be trusted?” Ken asked.
“Yes. But I have a feeling if you were to go and get those for me… it is not reliable because you might get the wrong thing,” Rainie said.
“You are not born in a village, Ge,” Rainie said, sipping the hot water.
“Actually I am,” Ken said.
Rainie looked at him, “Oh?”
“But I don’t remember which village I am from. It’s 20 years ago… so…” Ken tilted his head a bit. “So, what herbs can I get for you? I’ll walk down the street to get for you,”
“There is this herb call ‘24 types of herbs’…”
“That is super BITTER!”
“Like I have a choice… I still want to dance in the rain ok…”
“Do you think they sell in carton? I believe it is rainy season right now so it means you are very prone to sick, and so when you are sick I just give it to you,” Ken said.
Rainie slaps Ken’s arm. “Is that a question you intend to ask or a curse you are posing to me?!
Ken laughed. “How many dosages you need, Miss Yang?”
“One is enough okay… you said it is super bitter too!”
“Okay… I’ll get you a few in case your body is super stubborn and ONE dosage does not work,”
“Conclusion… you never ask me a question at all, right?! You’re still issuing me a couple dosages!”
Ken laughed. “You’re cute and fun to tease at. Okay, here’s how it goes. I’ll ask the shop owner if one dosage is enough since BIG KID is playing in the rain,”
“This is never ending!” Rainie said at Ken.
Ken laughed again. ‘Are you sure we’ve never met before? Because I feel like I know you all my life…’
“Ge? What are you doing?” Rainie waved her hand in front of Ken.
“Nothing. Was just thinking,” Ken smiled. “Okay, I’ll go out and get for you, so… you take care while I am not around,”
“Sure,” Rainie said.
11am. MyDance Dance Studio.
Vanness, dancing alone facing the mirror, stopped and looked at the door.
“Hey…” someone opened the door and say.
“Pace!” Vanness said. “Why didn’t you call me to tell me you are coming?”
Pace smiled as she enters. “I called you up this morning but you did not pick up the call. So I call over to the receptionist and she said your schedule for the morning is clear and you will be here, so I came over straight,”
“You call me up this morning?” Vanness asked, and he walked to the floor where he placed his phone at. “Ah…” he checked the call history, “No wonder. I put it to silent mode… forgot to switch it back to ringing mode since I woke up,” he looked at Pace, “Sorry for that,”
“No problem. Unless you don’t want to teach me dancing today,” Pace smiled.
“Yeah. I received a call today and said they have to reschedule the shoot due to some reasons which I cannot share with you, so… I am free to dance today,” she smiled.
Vanness laughed, “In my professional line for 12 years, this is the first time I was told by my student herself that she is here right NOW to dance,” he walked to the CD player and puts the proper CD in it.
“Okay, come…” Vanness extends his hand.
Pace placed her hand on Vanness’ hand, and they starts dancing.
“So how many hours you have today for dancing?” Vanness asked.
“Whole day,” Pace said. “It depends on your schedule today,” due to the dance she had to tilt her head to the right, and slightly to the back.
“Hold,” Vanness said, as he gently pushed her head. “Tilt the head more, body like this…” he adjusted.
“Like this?” Pace asked.
“Yes, ok… continue,” Vanness said. “Well, today I have a class at 3pm until 4.30pm,”
“Okay then. I can dance until 3pm then,”
“If you want to, you can join us. It’s ballroom dancing class anyway,” he said.
“Yeah. In fact, you can be my partner for the class too,” he smiled.
Pace laughed, “I don’t have that capability to be your dance partner yet,”
“Trust me, you do. At least better than others in the class!” he laughed.
“Hey!” she slapped his chest. “That’s so mean of you!”
“I don’t remember I taught you this part of the dance!” he referred to the slapping to his chest.
Both of them laughed.
“Nah… actually it’s 3rd class of beginners, and you are already in advanced level so you can make a good partner for me for the class later, that is if you want to,” Vanness said.
“Well, do I get to learn something from the class?” Pace smiled.
“Pretty much I think you will teach more than you learn,” Vanness laughed.
“Hah! I pay to teach?!” Pace laughed.
Vanness remained laughing. “You will learn something,”
“Are you sure?”
“Trust me. You will learn something in the class,” Vanness smiled.
12pm. Qing Xi Village.
“Mei, I’m home!” Ken said.
There is no respond.
“Mei!” he called again.
Again, there is no respond.
Ken placed the herbs and lunch he bought on the table and walked to the window and looked out to see if Rainie is at the pier just in case he missed her when he enters the house but she is not there. He walked to the door, to overlook at the park located in front of Rainie’s house and there is no one there.
“It would be insane of her to be at the park right now under the hot sun,” he mumbled. “Mei!” he called out again, wondering where she is. “She is sick and still going out…” he then walked, passing by Rainie’s room.
Ken stopped, hearing a soft call out from Rainie’s room. He frowned. “Mei?” he called, as he knocked on the door to realize the door is slightly ajar, which explains why he heard her. She did not respond to his knock, and thus he pushed the door open, to see that Rainie was asleep on her bed.
“Rain…” she called.
Ken smiled. “Slept,” he said, looking at her. “Okay… you can take ‘24 types of herbs’ after you wake up,” he said as he closed the door and walked away.
“Tian ge ge…”
Suddenly Rainie woke up, after she hears herself talking. She looked around the room. She remembers the dream… she was running in circles under the rain with her childhood friend happily.
“Tian ge ge…?” she repeated after herself. “Now I remember his name… yes… Tian ge ge… he is,” she then looked at the watch. “Ah… I slept. It’s 12pm already… where is Ge…” she stood up and headed to the door.
Ken, sitting in the living room, looked at Rainie opening the door. He smiled at her.
“Ge? Sorry, I’ve slept,”
“It’s okay. How’s your flu?”
She sniffed. “Hmm… doesn’t seem to be there anymore,”
He laughed. “Anyway, I’ve bought ’24 types of herbs’ for you and the man in the shop said you can take 2 dosages as in twice. It came in a bowl of soup-lookalike per dosage. So I bought you two dosages as per his advice,” he walked to the table.
“Oh… thanks,” she said, scratching her head. “You came back quite a while already?” she looked at the packed lunch on the table.
“I just came back,”
“Taken lunch already?”
“Not yet. I wait for you,”
“You can take lunch without me,”
“I’m not that hungry yet, and I like to eat with companion,” he smiled.
“Okay…” she sat down on the table. “We can take now. Shall we?”
“Sure,” he said and stood up, heading to the table. “So, do you have a good sleep?”
“Sort of,” she said. “You’ve never took ’24 types of herbs’ before, do you?”
Ken stared at her and shook, “I’ve never taken it but I’ve heard of it. Why do you ask and how do you know?” he opened the packed lunch’s cover of hers’ and pushed it in front of her.
“‘24 types of herbs’ is soup, and does not come in pills,” she smiled.
“That is why I know,” she smiled, “By the way you speak,”
Ken laughed as he opened his own lunch pack’s cover.
“City boy,” she laughed.
“I was born in village, okay,” he smiled.
“But you were too ‘city-nize’ already. As in, too ‘city-oriented’ thinking,” she smiled.
He laughed. “I only spend few years in the village, then I moved to the city,”
“Yeah… a few years in the village opposite 20 years in the city. So… I basically absorbed what it feels in the city more than what I can remember about my village life,” he said as he dives the chopstick into the bowl of noodles.
“Do you remember your village’s name?” she asked as she ate her noodles.
“Not really,” he said. “But I do remember I have a childhood friend in that village,”
“Really? What is his name?”
“Is a she. I don’t remember her name,”
“And by that you said you remember a childhood friend? You don’t remember her name!”
He laughed, “You are finding all my flaws so you can hit it back on me, right?”
“That’s me!” she laughed. “And I know you will do the same to me!”
“That’s what I like about you,”
“Sorry?” she stopped laughing and went stunned.
“Very carefree, spontaneous, quick-minded. And you are witty. I rarely find… I can say, hard to find, a girl like you to treat a guy like…” he said, “Let me rephrase. Many girls are holding back, trying to be their best… not being themselves when they are with a guy, or some strangers. You know, trying to be someone they are not,” he suddenly recalled Pearl, whom he thought he knows her well enough only to find out she is far from what he knew. He looked at her, “With you, I feel that you are yourself, and I can be who I am… without the need that I have to be the manager or something…”
“You are talking about me or the village that gives you that kind of feeling?”
He laughed, “You, Mei. You,”
“Some people use reputation to be who they are. I disagree. I used to be myself, and I don’t care who he or she is… I just be who I am… Being myself and doing what I want… that’s the best,”
“I agree with you,” Ken smiled. “That is why, I feel very homely here… and being myself when I am with you. You see… I just know you two days… and I already feel that… I can really trust you, be your friend…”
“Feeling close, I can say. Because I feel that too,” she smiled.
“Are we best friends now?”
“Since last night when you open up to me, Ge,” she said.
He smiled at her, “I am happy you can accept me as a friend for who I am,”
“Friends who are acting up due to their reputation or money… forget it. I don’t care. Reputation and money comes and go, only the kindness and personality in human remains… and that shows who the person really is. I can see that in you, Ge, your personality, and yes, I feel very close with you, that is why I have no problem opening up to you,”
“Weird. I have that same concept and feeling like you!” he said.
She laughed, “Maybe that is why we click almost instantly!”
“Well… despite I am a city boy like you claim… maybe because we were both village kids at heart,”
“Oh, don’t fight with me about that because you’ll never win me for I am more ‘village kid’ than you are!” she said.
They both laughed.
1pm. In a meeting somewhere in Taipei…
‘I’ve made Vanness walk home tonight so I will be able to fetch you at 7pm – Vic’
Winnie giggled at the SMS she received, and she responded.
‘You can fetch him home first before you come. I don’t mind if you want to change it to 7.30pm – Winnie’
Shortly after, Vic replied the SMS.
‘I have taken his car this morning and he lend it to me without hesitation knowing that I am going for dinner with you. Don’t worry – Vic’
‘So where are you going to bring me to for dinner? – Winnie’
‘Somewhere nice. I might not be able to bring you to a posh place, but trust me this is nice – Vic’
‘Okay. Dress code is not going to be casual, right? – Winnie’
‘Elegant will be fine. But I am not wearing tux! – Vic’
Winnie giggled, ensuring she didn’t interrupt the meeting. ‘I know what to wear. So, you’ll wear tie?’ she giggled again.
‘If I wear a tie I might have trouble swallowing food. But if you insist and you can finish my food since I cannot swallow I won’t mind wearing a tie… – Vic’
“Funny guy…” Winnie smiled.
‘You are funny. I’ll see you at 7pm. I’m in a meeting now actually – Winnie’
‘Oops. Sorry! Sure, I’ll see you at 7pm – Vic’
Winnie smiled as she kept her cell phone.